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Gitxsan Youth with Peace Message
CONTRIBUTION · 15th August 2012
GG Miles
It was a great day for celebrating history with a full day of events and a parade in Old Town Hazelton for Pioneer Day August 11, 2012. A 5/10 km Fun Run with Skeena Steamers started early at 8:30, and there was Pancake Breakfast at the Historic BC Café for non-runners.

By 10:30 parade participants were gathering at the ‘Ksan parking lot while Doug Donaldson’s MLA booth beside the First Nations High School offered everything for decorating kids’ bikes, with truly festive results. Crowds gathered, viewing chairs set up and vendors prepared for the day.

You could feast on fresh fry bread, burgers, smokies and fries, shish ka bobs and spring rolls, mini-donuts and a range of home baked treats. The parade began at noon after welcoming words from Mayor Alice Maitland and was led by the RCMP in full dress with the decorated bikes right behind them.

The 24 entries included floats from community groups and businesses and Smokey the Bear, horse drawn wagons hauling old time lifestyle displays, an old time swing jazz band, plus clowns, extremely loud ‘Cars for Cancer’ hotrods, fire engines, ambulance crew, the All Clans Dancers, Hazelton Area Theater Society (HATS) and the Bookmobile. As is tradition, the parade circled the town twice so everyone got a good look at everything, though some tricycle riders were quite tired by the end.

First Prize went to the Bent Box House of Treasures of the Gitxsan, the Pioneering Conservationists (of Bear Claw Lodge) took second, and third was the Brighter Futures children’s program of Gitanmaax. The youngest audience members covered their ears for all the noise but quickly dashed to collect the candy that was thrown from most floats.

The Learning Shop hosted an Iron Chef competition to promote local foods. Two teams, headed by Al Bush and Wilfred Bock were given abundant vegetables (peas, beans, beets, carrots, peas, squash, etc.) potatoes, eggs and an hour to create something spectacular. The secret ingredient, that had to be used, was Graham Larson’s ground beef. The Bush team was declared the winner, based on creativity, presentation and naturally, taste.

There were river raft floats, free horse wagon rides, a petting zoo and pony rides, free face painting and smoked dry fish for sale, raffle tickets and music all over the town, from small big band to local youth rockers the Racket. Throughout the day there were competitions of chess, checkers, junior fire fighters, 3 on 3 basketball, drama, live art demonstrations along with costume, yodeling and watermelon eating contests.

At day’s end Candles by the River Luminary for Cancer was held, with small lights shining on the boardwalk beside the Skeena River. After dark any adult who wasn’t worn out by the 47th Pioneer Day could head up to the Skeena Ice Arena to the dance.
All Clans Dancers of Hazelton
All Clans Dancers of Hazelton
Gitxsan House of Treasures a Winning Float
Gitxsan House of Treasures a Winning Float
A Parade is Fun to Ride In
A Parade is Fun to Ride In
Old Time Living Pioneer Conservationists Float
Old Time Living Pioneer Conservationists Float
Comment by Maggie Jo Johnson on 16th August 2012
I missed out on the "Pioneer Day out in the Sun"?!?! CRAP!!!

Okay, seriously. WHY do I always hear about these events only AFTER the event has occurred?!

I will have to remain more vigilant in the 'calendar' mode lest I miss another event. But, I didn't/still don't note any notation on the Community Calendar in this regard:(

We could'a attended the event with Grandma/cousins/multiple family members in tow after I could'a received an ETO offa work to take time offa work to lug all my extended family members along in 'tourist' style.

We missed out yet again in supportive Community Style.

(Heavy sigh)